tv MSNBC News Live MSNBC January 29, 2011 7:00am-8:00am EST
killers, he may have had several reasons to kill. jeffrey trail and david madsen may have been targeted for revenge, lee miglin and johnny reese, and then versace to secure his own fame. that's all for our report. i'm john seigenthaler. egypt in chaos, day five. thousands again in the streets to rage against the government. but will the growing discontent lead to regime change there? and a tale of two leaders in egypt, hosni mubarak makes a dramatic move to try to save his presidency. in the u.s., president obama walking a diplomatic tightrope. what is the best case scenario for the u.s. as the dramatic events play out in egypt and does the u.s. have any good
options? good morning, everyone. i'm alex witt and welcome to msnbc saturday. lots of breaking news we're following for you right now. let's get to the scene on the streets in cairo today. president hosni mubarak's cabinet has resigned on his orders but demonstrators are still taking to the streets by the tens of thousands by some estimates. the death toll has risen to at least 38 with this fifth day of protests under way right now. about 2,000 people have been wounded. joining us from london, with a good morning to you, lepts get the update from there. >> good morning, alex. hundreds of anti-government protesters are on the streets again in central cairo, as egyptian authorities have extended the curfew to extend from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. right through the egyptian evening and the night hours. this are reports of gunfire and tear gas. protesters have clashed with police in alexandria, reports in
rafah, armed tanks, telling protesters to observe the curfew. there are conflicting reports of the number dead. some say it includes 10 policemen, medical officials say 38 have died and 2,000 wounded. others are saying 74 people have died and now what we do know is 30 bodies have been taken to cairo hospital yesterday, and they include the bodies of two children, a 7-year-old and a 4-year-old. so the dead risen to 20, the number dead is expected to rise, though, because reports are coming in from hospitals as well as morgues. and this will now be the fifth day of protest as security sources are saying 1500 people have been injured and on top of that, 750 police officers as well. the main demand of demonstrators is of course the resignation of president mubarak. the cabinet has submitted its resignation and mubarak will have a new government that he's pledged to reform but he is
refusing to step down. people are saying we don't want a change of cabinet or regime, mubarak has to go, alex. >> all right. you talk about that being in essence the endgame. is that what you're hearing from protesters on the streets? the only way to quell this uprising is the resignation of hosni mubarak? they are dealing with huge issues here that cannot be solved overnight. >> that's right. all the witness, eyewitness, all the people on the street, every time they're being interviewed they're saying what away want is mubarak to go. we don't want a change of government, we don't want a change of cabinet, we want nothing else. mubarak has to go. that's what people are saying. that's what they've been saying for the last five days. >> okay. and in terms of the numbers of dead, we've been reporting 38, you said it is fluid. i have seen numbers as many as 50. are you seeing it in that ballpark or might it go even higher? >> it definitely will go higher because people are saying the reports are still coming in. hospitals are still feeding back what numbers they have heard
about in terms of the numbers dead as well as numbers injured. 2,000 injured so far, that's a huge number. a significant percentage of that obviously include the dead as well, but at the moment the highest number we're hearing is 74 dead. >> we're getting word from the associated press there are thousands of people at the airports trying to get out of the country. has that crossed your wires there in london as well? are you getting any word on that? >> there are people cueing up to try and get a flight to get out of the country. the foreign office in the uk has said that all essential travel, it should only be essential travel to egypt. places that are tourist destinations, share saying those are unaffected, but both the american administration as well as british one are saying don't travel to egypt unless you absolutely have to. >> okay. i know you're going to be following this for us from london for which we thank you very much. certainly it is a tense situation for the u.s. government which is working to balance the rights of protesters
without alienating a critical ally in the region. president obama spent a full half hour yesterday speaking with egypt's president. he spoke to reporters just a short time later. >> the united states has a close partnership with egypt and we've cooperated on many issues, including working together to advance a more peaceful region. but we've also been clear that there must be reform. political, social and economic reforms that meet the aspirations of the egyptian people. in the absence of these reforms, grievances have built up over time. >> let's bring in white house correspondent mike viqueira. good saturday morning to you. >> good morning, alex. >> what is the level of concern there? is the biggest overseas viccris is this the biggest one so far? >> an extraordinary day, so many questions, so many variables, so
much ambiguity. watching from a distance, yes, the united states government has its ambassadors, it has secure communications, diplomat to diplomat, military to military, but still to a large degree in the west wing of the white house yesterday, watching television along with the rest of us trying to discern or divine what the future of egypt and its 30-year-old regime with hosni mubarak might be. throughout the previous two days, really, but capped off with hillary clinton, secretary of state yesterday, trying to walk a very fine diplomatic line, citing the fact that egypt has been a partner over the course of the last 30 years of the mubarak regime, ever since making peace with israel. a bulwark, a u.s. ally in the arab world, not only because of their peace with israel but the larger question of the sues we canal, a vital transport point for u.s. military and commercial shipping and any number of reasons why it is in one sense in the interest of the united states to keep mubarak in power
if in fact that is the price of stability. on the other hand, the president, harshest critics yet, having spent 30 minutes on the phone with hosni mubarak before speaking to the world from the state dining room, precipitated what the president did and what time he came out and what he said. the united states sends $1.5 billion in aid to egypt every year, it is the fourth largest recipient of foreign aid, and yesterday the white house and top officials were intimating that is in jeopardy, under review as white house press secretary robert gibbs said earlier in the day. the president calling for basic rights, giving voice to some of the frustrations expressed in the streets of cairo over the last three days, free and fair elections, freedom of assembly, freedom of speech in egypt, this
is what he's calling for and he's calling for president mubarak to deliver on that promise now. >> mike, i'd like you to check your monitor here as we give our viewers a live look at what's happening in cairo right now. i know that you've read the wires as well as i, that we have reports of as many as 50,000 people, this courtesy of al jazeera, having gathered in downtown cairo. correct me if i'm wrong, but we have two types of police there in egypt. you have, like the regular police, the people that would issue parking tickets or investigate a burglary or something at home, and then you have sort of this heightened security police. would that be the detail that we're seeing there, that have more mill tar realistic abilities? >> i cannot say for certain, alex. i'm not very well versed in the egyptian security apparatus. i have heard over the last several hours there is a distinction between the egyptian police, which is largely reviled by many of the people that you see in the streets, and the
egyptian military, which president mubarak called out over the course of the last 24 hours, held in somewhat higher regard by the population in general in egypt. another very significant development, of course, is the situation with muhammad elbaradei, arms inspection organization, so many of us, so well familiar with him since the days of iran, since the days of iraq, and all the controversy surrounded weapons of mass destruction. he is a revered figure in egypt, particularly among the people who have taken to the streets and he apparently now has called for president mubarak to step aside. >> interesting that is a man recipient of the nobel peace price and he himself had water cannons shot at him after walking out of prayers yesterday. a little more right now on what all this means for the united states in perspective i'm joined in studio by msnbc military analyst jack jacobs.
good morning, colonel. >> good morning, alex. >> these pictures we just saw, these live ipictures of cairo, i'm curious which police these are doing the job protecting whatever area it is, it may even be the egyptian museum, all the antiquities and relics they absolutely had to put security around that, very revered community there by the museum. >> you're quite right. there's a number of different levels of police protection. the regular cairo police, there are special state police, and they're in critical locations, particularly where the government is located, and then last night the military police were called out, and military units for the first time in this whole process. the latter two, special police and military police are going to be guarding critical installations. they're not going to be holding hands like you see there. they're fully armed with small arms, automatic weapons, dogs, and the like.
and most people are going to stay away from it. as a matter of fact, the military, the egyptian military, is the real lynchpin in this whole exercise. how the military decides to go will tell you what egypt is going to look like when it's all over. >> speaking of the military, egypt has been the recipient of a lot of foreign aid from the united states but notably military equipment. if we can put up this laundry list of the kinds of equipment, starting with, not coincidentally, the f-16 jet fighters. that's also a symbolic entity, the fact they are using u.s.-made f-16 jet fighters, but look at the rest of it as well. >> yeah, they're loaded with american equipment. they used to have soviet equipment years ago. they're loaded with brand-new american equipment. they have lots of it. some of it can -- they're going to need continuing american expertise to keep running. some of it, they will not. the -- some of the weapons systems, the ammunition, for example, they can use. they don't need any assistance.
but things like f-16s, trucks of various types and varieties, electronic equipment and so on, this stuff is not like driving your car, drive it for 100,000 miles and then get a tune-up, you use it for two hours and you need maintenance. and maintenance requires spare parts. and that's -- that's the way in which we can control to the extent we can control anything, that's the way in which we can control this military. >> to the extent. we'll talk more with you about that, because there's all sorts of scenarios here. jack, we'll have you back in a bit. thank you. >> see you later. more on the unrest in egypt, a live report from richard engel, he's in cairo with the latest on today's protests. but first, president obama's handling of this crisis. has he done enough? and how delicate is this situation? we're talking about it on msnbc saturday. and made it less intense. ♪ now people everywhere are getting a deep clean and fresher mouth without the intensity that kept them away. it still kills bad breath germs for a whole mouth clean.
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and welcome back to msnbc saturday. this breaking news out of egypt, we give you live looks right now at cairo. we've been seeing h ining hundr gathering, actually this is cut tape but we have had these live looks. the death toll has risen to as many as 45. as many as 2,000 have been wounded since friday. covering the middle east for. this c nchncnbc, youssef, what u seeing? >> well, the situation is developing very quickly. i'm standing here at the square, in the very heart of cairo, and tens of thousands of egyptians have gathered here today. some estimates as high as 100,000, and they're still coming, streams from all sides of the city. there are still of course different parts of the city that have, that are on fire. a building has been burning for
some 24 hours, we see smoke, the army continues to be threatened. tanks all across the square, and some of the key institutions like the ministry of information, the ministry of interior, the embassies of the united states and the united kingdom as well. now, as we can see, different chants calling for his downfall, what are these protesters demonstrating against? inflation, higher food prices, unemployment, corruption, people here from all walks of life. the turnout is just incredible. there's a sense that there's something going to happen tonight. the protesters continue to underscore that they are not happy with the cabinet being reappointed, rather, with the cabinet changing. they want the whole system to start anew and that would include a resignation from the president himself. we do not know if this is an option at this point and where
the army stands. what the army is doing at the moment is protecting those key institutions. again, no confrontations at the moment. i saw some very, very intimid e intimidating images yesterday just in front of my hotel. tear gas, rubber bullets, have were violent clashes between protesters, and vandalism we had reports in different some of the mainstream consumer bases, and all of that has eased a little bit this morning, but much more could happen tonight. >> absolutely. yousef, as we're looking at the square, we see people fum ping their fists in protests, i'm sure chanting loudly. what is left of the square, given the fires that happened yesterday? does it look somewhat burned out? or are there buildings still standing that are occupied and open for business at all? >> reporter: well, some shops are open for business. remember, saturday is the second day of the weekend here in
egypt, so some stores are traditionally closed. in the morning we saw some light traffic, that faded fairly quickly as more and more protesters gathered here in the center of cairo. the buildings still stand, the main building, the national council for women and ruling party's headquarters continue to be on fire. firefighters have arrived on the scene. this is more than 12 hours after protesters and rioters set the building on fire. none of the buildings have collapsed as far as we understand, but again the army is threatened, but you need to remember the protesters don't have any -- they respect the army. it's different with the police, which has been pulled out of the city. where a lot of people feel that they've been abused, abused their rights of authority over time and the army still has respect. >> i find that curious, the army, while seen as a very nationalistic respected entity, it has also over the years
supported the regime of hosni mubarak. so are there underlying concerns that the military might turn on the egyptian citizens as a result of trying to support the president? >> well, i mean, it's a good point, to say that the army had supported the almost three decade rule of hosni mubarak, but the army upholds the constitution and we saw that in tunisia and many other countries around the world as well. so the hope here is that the army will support the people like it was the case in tunisia. remember, a lot of fears in tunisia about the possibility -- the people we talked to ten days ago, or 14 days ago, were convinced this political contagion would not spread. the army fully supports the president, and that is still the case at the moment. but we don't know how long that will last. because if you look at number of people here in the square, and the sense of egyptians and what
they're saying about the regime, they're calling for thedown fall. remember, one or two months ago you could not stand in the square and talk against the president or call for the downfall of the regime. you would be arrested. but the outpouring today is just -- it's difficult to describe the transition and the changes that are -- have happened since the protest began in january, on january 25th. today is the fifth day and the turnout is just incredible. i don't know what pictures you're getting, but this is an event that hasn't happened in decades. unprecedented. >> yeah. i will tell you we are getting live pictures, and excellent reporting in the midst of thousands reporting there in downtown cairo. appreciate that. let's get a closer look right now at the bond the united states and egypt have had throughout the years and the state of the relationship before the protests broke out. my colleague is here with all those details. >> a troubled egypt could hurt the u.s. economy and its homeland security. here's why. first there is oil.
take a look at this map. you see egypt right here. here are its neighbors. 40% of the world's oil supply comes from this part of the world. here in the united states, we're paying about $3 a gallon right now. that could spike further if trouble erupts in egypt, shutting down shipping lanes in that area, and in fact crude oil spiked 4% yesterday alone. if this continues, we'll feel that at the pumps and it could cause the economy to sputter. second, the protests we're seeing in north africa as you were just looking at could spread to other nations led by autokrats in this area. look at the neighborhood around here, we've got saudi arabia and jordan, to the east and to the north, we've got morocco and libya to the west. if uprising spread to these countries in this area, the western-friendly leadership could be removed or weakened in these areas and with them gone, terrorist training grounds could grow in their countries, perhaps.
thirdly, the middle east peace process could be further strained. >> we are privileged to witness tonight a significant achievement in the cause of peace. an achievement none thought possible a year ago. or even a month ago. an achievement that reflects the courage and wisdom of these two leaders. >> i want the to take you back there to 1978 because of that historic peace agreement between egypt and israel, which was brokered by president jimmy carter at that time. if muslim extremists take over egypt where we're seeing a lot of the strife at the moment, egypt would probably withdraw from that, that would leave jordan the only arab friend to israel. finally, there's the stuff the west buys, egypt bridges africa to the middle east, with seas to
the north and the south. the romans know this connection and cut a hole in the ground 2,000 years ago. the suez canal, it's just over 100 miles long. 35,000 boats passed through this in 2009. each trek taking about 15 hours. it's europe's life line to goods. the alternative trip? that's all the way around africa. that could be three weeks longer and thousands of dollars more per trip. egypt, an important lynchpin certainly to the world's oil economy, and to the middle east peace, a country you can fit the states of california and texas in, not large in size but at this point, alex, it should be large in the u.s.'s mind. >> you can about imagine. that would take three weeks to go some 6,000 miles. >> a long way to go. >> indeed. richard lui, thanks so much. we'll have more on the unrest in egypt, everyone, could the country become a tipping point in the region leading to bigger protests?
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27 past, we have new details emerging out of egypt right now. al jazeera is reporting moment elbaradei reportedly saying the only way to end the unrest is for mubarak to resign. he ask calling the president's promise to form a new government disappointing. al jazeera reports protesters are 50,000 strong in cairo. so what are the right moves for president obama? what is the best and worst case scenario? richard wolffe, good morning. >> good morning, alex. >> we had the president noticeably quiet until 6:30 or so eastern time when he made the brief statement. given how sensitive the situation is right now, do you think the less is more approach works better here? >> here's the quandary for them. the administration has prided itself on taking the opposite approach to its predecessors and
under president bush there was this democracy agenda which sought to promote democracy throughout the region and transform it toward america's goals. the problem is that policy meant a certain taint got associated with democracy in general. people started to see it as a tool for american foreign policy. so the more america presses, the more counter productive it can be, and that's one big reason why you've heard such a cautious response and a delayed response from the president. the other thing is some practical reasons of course, they wanted to talk to president mubarak, see what reforms he put on the table, and the pace of this has just moved much quicker than anyone expected. >> well, that's it. the president didn't speak with hosni mubarak until yesterday. four days worth of protest, but that signal to you perhaps the white house didn't realize how bad this could get? and if so, is that something to be concerned about? >> i don't think anyone knew how quickly this would respond, in terms of the reaction to tunisia and also look at what we're seeing today.
it's unclear just what kind of impact mubarak's promise of reforms would be. last night, when you had 50,000 people on the streets today it suggests it wasn't nearly enough. so this has taken everyone by surprise. i think there was a thought that maybe there would be a domino effect. in other countries before getting to the big one, egypt is right at the heart of the political, intellectual and media world in terms of arab and muslim culture. so if a country of 18 million people is going to undergo this kind of transformative experience, then it's hard to predict and it's especially hard to predict when it's moving this quickly. >> robert gibbs has said they will re-evaluate the amount of aid given to egypt as a result of this crisis. do they have any leverage to get egypt to move in the direction they want? >> that's a big piece of leverage. remember, it may sound cautious to us and it surely is, but there's no mistaking the message sent out there into the region
with this kind of talk. remember, there was just a threat of some loans to israel by the first bush administration, by 41, when there was -- it was seen as unprecedented pressure on israel just to even question an element of american aid to the region. so this question mark, this review about egyptian aid is not to be dismissed. of course, the conversations that we don't know about, the private ones, the kind of pressure that's going on behind the scenes of international friends to egypt, not just from america, those are all important as well. but there is a very strong signal going out, now it's just been delayed and hesitant in coming. >> it's president mubarak, he's been a pretty strong ally for the u.s. for decades. if he is ousted, what can that mean for relations with the muslim world? >> longer term it can actually be much better, because you'll get a stronger, a stronger government with more democratic support, with presumably a better economy. remember, a lot of the reasons
for these protests is economic unhappiness with the last three decades. but short term, it could mean extreme volatility. you remember that the biggest opposition group in egypt is the muslim brotherhood, it's an islamist group, and clearly that is counter to the interests of both israel and the united states across the region. so it depends what takes shape. if it's a reformed, secular government, that may be the best position. but we don't know. it's just completely unpredictable at this point. >> do you see the bottom line, best case scenario that would make all sides happy? >> well, that would be a stable situation in terms of having a stable army control, of having more democratic reforms, of having open elections. remember, the presidential elections are really not far away. and that means how you treat opposition figures like mohammed elbaradei, if he's under this veiled house arrest, if he's getting water cannoned, clearly it's going to be difficult for
any stable government to take hold. but a reformed egyptian government would clearly be the best option. if the muslim brotherhood really takes power, that's going to be a big problem for america and its ally. >> okay, richard wolffe, appreciate that discussion. we've been told as many as 2,000 foreign tourists are trying to find a way out of egypt as this anti-government protest and the largesse of it. richard engel joins us live. good morning. tell us what you're seeing. >> reporter: well, i'm also seeing, and good morning to you, foreign tourists parking up their bags trying to get to the airport. the egyptian government is trying to contain this situation. universities have been suspended indefinitely here in cairo. a curfew that was imposed yesterday has been extended as well. the hours of the curfew now going from 4:00 local until 8:00 in the morning, yet despite
these actions, thousands of demonstrators are once again on the streets of cairo, and across egypt today. almost no egyptian police are on the streets of cairo anymore. many police stations have been abandnded. the army has moved in. it's a show of force. soldiers are warning protesters not to gather. but mostly egyptians are just walking by the troops. in downtown cairo, the protests still continued saturday to topple egyptian president hosni mubarak. the demonstrators are refusing to accept an offer of concession mubarak made in a televised speech late friday. he promised to form a new cabinet and allow more freedom and democracy. but protesters don't believe the president of 30 years is interested in real change. our demand has been clear since
the beginning, mubarak must step down, said this demonstrator. after friday's massive clashes, which saw running battles between thousands of demonstrators and riot police, today there are real dangers of a collapse of basic law and order. the headquarters of president mubarak's political party still burned on saturday. but the party is right next to egypt's famous antiquities museum, home to the mummies and treasures of pharaohs like tutankham tutankhamen. a chain was formed around to protect it. but they can't control the fire. today the head of the antiquities authority made an urgent appeal for help to put out the fire before it spreads. egypt remains highly unstable. protesters say they'll keep going until mubarak is gone. witnesses tell us there are efforts under way now to contain
that fire by the egyptian museum, but there are also reports of looting taking place here in cairo, and american fast food restaurant has been set on fire, as a shopping mall has been looted, a courthouse has been attacked. so while the egyptian government is trying to contain the protests, there are fears the basic security and stability in this city, which has been the only thing that egyptians have welcomed from mubarak's rule, that that -- that stability is no longer the case here. >> richard, i've read among those taking part in the protest are women, families, it's not just what people typically expect, young, frustrated men that are out there. what does that say? the fact that this seems to be reflective of the entire egyptian population. >> reporter: i must say that most of the protesters are young men. there have been some women, they are probably in the maybe 5% or
10% of the demonstrators. this is not the kind of thing that people are bringing their families to. it has been quite violent in places. there are many people who support the movement, but when you're out in the main squares, in the yesterday, in particular, with the running gun pbattles ad tear gas battles, some reports of light live fire use as well, it's mostly young men. >> okay. richard, with regard to the muslim brotherhood which you spoke about in your piece there, the big concern would be that they might get a toehold, some sort of a foot of power as a result of this if there was an overthrowing of the mubarak regime. what would that mean specifically with the relationship with israel? >> reporter: if the muslim brotherhood were to come to power and that's something many egyptians are concerned about, that this wave of unrest could sweep this organization into power, it would have dramatic
effects, not only on egypt's foreign policy, but with the united states, with israel in particular. the muslim brotherhood does not support the peace treaty with israel. the idea that people pushing for is not a muslim brotherhood take overbut more freedom of speech, more access to better jobs, to end the system of nepotism that is in place. but as protests happen and as revolutions happen, i think you can call what's happening right now nothing less than a revolution. the people who start it do at times lose control of their own movements. >> this was not something inspired by the muslim brothered had, correct? they were somewhat surprised by the enormity, the scope of this revolution, the protests? >> reporter: not if you ask the egyptian authorities. the egyptian authorities maintain this has always been a muslim brotherhood plot. now, the egyptian government has been saying that a long time to defend its -- defend its rule.
but it may not be entirely wrong. the muslim brotherhood initially was sitting back, was watching these protests develop. they were in the early stages being organized by human rights activists, by intellectuals, by the unemployed. whether the muslim brotherhood was secretly stoking the flames, it's hard to know. the egyptian government has good intelligence on the muslim brotherhood and that is what the egyptian government has always claimed. they are certainly involved in the protests now. >> on a personal note, were you in an area yesterday that was doused with tear gas? i mean, i believe i saw on "nightly news" you were wiping away tears as well. i mean, how are you doing today? >> reporter: i'm fine. the -- this is a dramatic period of transition, of change in egypt, this is something that is unprecedented. over the city yesterday, it's just something that sort of
comes with covering major stories like this. it is still an unfolding situation. people here are not sure how quickly things will develop today. the big question is a curfew that is supposed to take place in just about an hour and a half. will egyptians follow it? if you listen to the protesters and you can probably hear them in the background right now. >> yeah. >> there are no indications they will follow the orders that this curfew is going to be implemented. >> yeah. and those protesters that we can hear there, how far away are they, and are you close to the square? are you close to the bridge? i mean, where are you located right now? >> reporter: i am right in downtown, very close to the main square, which is called tahrir square. and nbc news has had a bureau here for a very long time. a lot of the media are clustered in this area. the downtown center of cairo is where the government buildings are. and because of the protests, the
protests tend to converge around the government buildings, this has also been a vantage point to see what's going on. the protests are not just happening here, however. they are in other parts of the country. and in places that are outside of cairo. that's where they've been the most violent. we're hearing more witness reports of live ammunition being used in some of the remote parts of the country, not necessarily in downtown cairo where it will be the most provocative and where the egyptian government, although it doesn't have a lot of control right now, has more control than it does in the provinces. >> i think they're well aware the eyes of the world are watching what's happening in cairo, thanks to reporting like yours. richard engel, thanks very much and hope to see you again. what this crisis in egypt means for economies around the world. could it cause another oil crisis?
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egypt. up to 50,000 people reportedly hitting the streets to demand that the government change its ways. there is no sign so far that the resignation of hosni mubarak's cabinet this morning has done anything at all to appease the protesters, calling for their president's ouster. the washington, d.c., bureau chief for al jazeera, i welcome you. >> good morning. >> what are the chances, you think, that hosni mubarak will weather this storm and remain president? >> it's interesting because the eyes of the region are focused on the example that the tu tunisians have set. he gave a speech in which a lot of arabs heard last night in president mubarak's speech to the egyptian people, 24 hours later ben ali left the country.
i don't think that's necessarily going to be the scenario in egypt, as the -- the amazing mark twain says, history does not repeat itself but it rhymes. and certainly in the region, a lot of people are watching what's happening in tunisia and concluding that the same will inevitably happen in egypt. the announcement by president hosni mubarak that he will dissolve the government as we heard this morning in your coverage is certainly not doing much to tamper the amount of anger of egyptians. so -- but i think at least the door has been opened for other doors that egyptians will go through. >> but, how -- how long do you think he can hang on? if there are protests this large, sustained themselves for days to come, there's got to be an end point at which president hosni mubarak may realize that it's over. or is he not of that mentality?
is he such a survivor that he will hang on for dear life no matter what? >> well, there are two things. one is that regardless of whether he stays or he goes, a lot of people, especially inside egypt, have concluded that the egypt that we have known up until now, there's no going back to it. things -- something's got to give. things will be necessarily by definition different, whether he leaves or not. now, as to the issue of when he may leave, clearly if the protests continue on the scale that we saw yesterday and we continue to see today, there will be pressure on him to leave. not just from within egypt, but also from outside of egypt. we certainly heard echos of that, as subdued as they may have been, in president barack
obama's speech last night. but the pressure will be mounting on him unless the protesters do see some benefit in the change of government, and that is president mubarak, that he's announcing. but i -- it looks doubtful at this point. >> all right. but who is waiting in the wings? might it be nobel peace prize winner mohammed elbaradei, who was doused with water cannons yesterday joining protesters? might it be the muslim brotherhood? might it also be members of this new cabinet? i mean, there's always the fear of the unknown. you know who you have here in hosni mubarak, what is the fear about change in terms of who might step in? >> well, that's the real pickle that not just egypt is facing, but also tunisia continues to face. i mean, these guys, they've been in power for decades, and they've done at least according
to their critics, everything they possibly can during their reign to prevent the emergence of somebody that the local population and the international community could count on in periods of transition such as this. there is no one at the moment that either the egyptians or the international community can bet on safely that they will be able to lead the country. you mentioned the muslim brotherhood. i think one of the main reasons why we saw the success of the outcome, if you will, toppling the government in tunisia for example, is precisely because there were no political parties actually involved in it. this situation is repeating itself today in egypt. precisely a lot of egyptians are saying the reason why we have seen the street actually move and achieve a lot of egyptians are seeing this as an achievement already, is
precisely because no political parties, muslim brotherhood or others were involved in it. elbaradei has a lot of credentials and he's burnished his credentials outside of egypt. elbaradei at this particular point does not seem to be able to connect with the consensus of everyday egyptians. that leaves the army, and the army has always been-that leave. the army has always been a strong player. so far, we've seen them side with the people. but there's no particular head in the army that seems to be a player, that either the egyptians or the international community can bet on at this point. >> which shows even more uncertainty in this situation. thank you so much for joining us from al jazeera in washington. i know we'll speak to later on again this morning. >> thank you. the ripple effect of the upheaval, the impact it's having on the stock market here on msnbc saturday. what up, dave! i just point, shoot and post to facebook.
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egypt's actions have markets paying close attention. the price of oil jumped 4.3%, the largest one-day spike since september 2009. that's being blamed for breaking the dow's eight-week winning street. vera gibbons, this is having a big impact on the market. >> it is. the dow had one of the worst days we've seen in months. i think investors are using this as a reason to get out of stocks, moving to safer assets. oil was up $89 a barrel. now oil, $13.38 an ounce. so they're taking some of the gains off the tables and moving it to other areas. >> so we see the dow dropping, oil prices rising. are those the only economic impacts we can expect? >> there are much broader economic impacts because of this. we don't know the extent of the ri riots. that's what investor res waiting to see, what happens on monday. a lot of uncertainty out there.
the markets don't like uncertainty, but particularly when it's in the middle east. if it spreads to other areas, you could see oil shoot up. that would have ramifications on us, the consumer, on the basic level. oil and gas, groceries, that will go up, as well. >> indeed. thank you for that. coming up, we'll have a live report from cairo at the top of the hour here on msnbc saturday. well somewhere along the way, emily went right on living. but you see, with the help of her raymond james financial advisor, she had planned for every eventuality. which meant she continued to have the means to live on... even at the ripe old age of 187. life well planned. see what a raymond james advisor can do for you. we removed the alcohol and made it less intense. ♪ it still kills bad breath germs for a whole-mouth clean. and it's never felt so good. new less intense listerine® zero™.
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we're back with breaking news out of egypt. al jazeera is reporting a disagreement between the egyptian executive branch and egyptian military leadership. ap is reporting that access to pyramids is now closed to tourists. oceanographer: diving to 4,000 meters. - boy: go down! down. down. - boy #2: whoa. straight, go straight. no, to the right! kids: to the right! to the right! go to the right! boy: go to the right!